The Christ of Christmas: Readings for advent

Broadman & Holman

Calvin Miller

Central Theme
We can enrich the beauty of Christmas by looking at the familiar stories from a new vantage point.

When Calvin Miller was a young boy during the Depression he was poor. But his mother was such a great storyteller, that he recalls being moved to tears when she read The Christmas Carol. He felt so bad that all Tiny Tim had for Christmas was a goose, forgetting for a moment that he and his family didn’t even have a goose for Christmas!

The ability to tell a compelling story, compellingly, is Calvin Miller’s gift to us this Christmas. For within each of the vignettes recounted in this advent reader, is a daily gem, a reminder of the richness and timeliness of the Christmas story. The same story we hear every year, looked at differently to enliven our celebration of Jesus’ birth.

As a young pastor in Omaha Miller was surrounded by Catholics and Lutherans and came to appreciate their observance of the religious calendar. It was there he became acquainted with the advent traditions and incorporated them into his own Southern Baptist Church. Each day’s reader includes: a passage of scripture, meditation on that scripture, complementary artwork, an additional reading, a prayer and an epigram summarizing the point of that days reading.

Beliefs num
–Like John the Baptist we have been called to bear witness to the light.
–The Christmas story exalts small and common places and people.
–Old men who had waited patiently for the Messiah were finally rewarded for their patience.
–With God nothing is impossible and even what appears unacceptable (a pregnant virgin) is part of God’s plan.
–The joy of Christmas also recognizes the pain of love) a sword will pierce your heart).

Questions Worth Discussing num
–What is the richest aspect of the Christmas story to you?
–What aspect of the Christmas story is especially important this year?
–Read the quotes below. Which triggers a respsnse in you and why?

Provocative Quotes byline
–To stand in an uncaring world and say, ¢â‚¬Ëœsee here is the Christ’ is a daring act of courage.
–It is a sin to quit believing too early, before we have found our usefulness to God,
–A God big enough to make you afraid is powerful enough to accomplish all He is about to ask of you,
–God’s every act is a point of wonder for those he calls to participate in it.
–The proud carpenter ceased caring about what was proper and began to care about what was right.
–Did God try to become a man? No. God never tried anything. He did it.
–God often arrives incognito and embarrasses the selfish who have denied Him a place to stay.
–The comedy of God is the never-ending laughter of divine surprise.
–Our goal as parents is to help our children place their faith not in our faith but in their Father.
–To love the library is never inconsistent with loving the Lord.
–Jesus was the Son of God with a local address. He was God with a zip code.

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